Ish is getting Real

In less than 48 hours I pick up my rental car!!! WHAT?! I’m really going to drive over 2,000 miles to see my Papa! {With 3 teenagers}

I am so excited. I can’t even think or write or focus on anything at all because I keep looking at Facebook and seeing everyone packing and flying and getting to Philly! It is like the biggest Catholic party that I’ve ever seen and I LOVE IT. I love being Catholic. I love being a Christian and so much is going to be asked of us in the coming years to radiate the joy of what it means to be a follow of Jesus. There is no way that I will be able to do that without God’s grace and so I’m driving to be filled up with as much of it as I can find.

I also realize that maybe that was the point of the last meltdown of mine. I really had come to the end of my rope. I was so angry at God for all of the hardships that my family have gone through for the last 2 1/2 years. Warren passed away two years ago and the way that his death shook my family, marriage and faith to the core was scary. It still is scary. I don’t really have a strong sense of trust in God. I keep waiting for the next thing to happen (like my husband stepping on a rattlesnake, which he almost did this morning) that will knock us on our ass again. The day that Warren died was the last time that my family all attended Mass together. We have missed Mass Sunday after Sunday, then go to confession and get back to being faithful until the next crisis and we just can’t seem to drag ourselves out of the house for anything at all. Then some kids go and others have epic fits and don’t go. My oldest son has been to Mass once since then and has the same trust issues that I have, except that he is 21 and doesn’t have the experience that I have of knowing that nothing else soothes that gaping hole in our hearts like God, even when He seems to be so far away. It only seems fitting that I’m going to seek the grace needed to put things back in order at the World Meeting of Families.

As I watch all kinds of friends prepare to leave and also arrive in Philadelphia all I can think is that I am so blessed to be a part of this Catholic faith of ours. People who don’t understand exactly what we are a part of are really missing out. People choosing to grandstand at this moment by turning their backs on Pope Francis like two years olds who aren’t getting their way are really missing the entire point of the Seat of Peter. He is here as a symbol of God’s love. God love YOU more than you think He does. It doesn’t matter what you have done, what you are doing or what changes you are willing to make on anything, He loves you. Pope Francis is not Jesus, but he is a representative of Jesus, and it’s amazing that Jesus left us the gift of a papa.

The Seat of Peter is bigger than any one man, it is a gift from Jesus Himself who said “upon this Rock, I will build my Church”. Pope Benedict was the Holy Father when I became Catholic. I didn’t even like Pope Benedict. In fact, I said a lot of ugly things about him before my conversion, things that I would punch someone for saying now. The day in Rome when I saw Pope Benedict pass by me changed the course of my entire life. After that I began to read his writings and learn about Christ and Catholicism. He is a fantastic teacher and a loving priest who wants the world to know that God loves them. The love that I have for Pope Francis was born out of the love that I have for Pope Benedict. I wish that I could tell Pope Benedict just how much I love him and how much he helped me to know Jesus.

Behind both of these men and even behind Saint John Paul II, is a loving God who is still to this day seeking His lost lambs to put them over His shoulders and bring them Home. I was one of the most lost of them all and He found me. He picked me up and carried me until He saw fit to set me down and let me walk for myself. The first place that I’m going is to see my Papa!!!

Please pray for me and my family!


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